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Book Review: The Reluctant Prophet, The Reluctant Prophet Series Book One by Nancy Rue

The Reluctant Prophet is book one in The Reluctant Prophet series.
Book two is Unexpected Dismounts, was published October 2011.
Book three is Too Far to Say Far Enough, release date October 2012.
I studied the reviews on Amazon, Christian Book, and Barnes and Nobles, and all three sites gave the book five or nearly five stars. 
The Reluctant Prophet won best in Contemporary Series at the
Christy Awards in 2011.

Allison Chamberlain age 42 is a new Christian, unmarried, and an independent minded woman living in St. Augustine, Florida. She works for a tourist company---Camelot Carriage Service. She attends a non-denominational church. She has few friends she associates with. During a Sunday morning worship service, and while she's comparing herself and checking out the other members in the church, and wondering "what's going on with her own life?" She feels a nudge, and hears a voice in her head telling her to, "Go out and buy a Harley."
She is shocked, her stomach heaves acid. She wonders at the audacity of this request. The motorcycle adventure is just the beginning of her life turning upside down.

Positive Points:
  • This is a story I've not heard before and I have high regards for the author telling it. 
  • The focus is not on a complacent Christian, but on a gal willing to get out of her comfort zone for the sake of helping others. 
  • I loved the opening line. "I found Jesus seven years ago, but until that Sunday morning, I didn't know what to do with him." 
  • Allison speaks provocatively, raw, boldly, a bit bawdy. Her character is not a timid damsel in distress, rather a woman with a past we don't hear about in the book, but it's obvious she has hidden pain.
  • Allison means well by her words and actions even if she come across as abrasive and unteachable.
  •  I loved the background characters more than Allison. Hank (Henrietta, but don't call her that) is a solid voice of compassion as well as mentor for Allison. She is one of the few people Allison respects and listens to. 
  • Those "broken winged birds" that Allison devotes her life to gave me insight to a troubled world I know minimal information about.
  • I loved page 239, a heart-felt prayer between those who gathered together to pray for guidance and direction.
Negative Points:
  • Allison's focus is to help others with food, clothing, shelter. She is a compassionate person and selflessly devoted to helping others. Yet, the Gospel message is most important. I know, you may be thinking, but what about empty stomachs and people who are sick or without a place to lay their head at night. I didn't say these things were NOT important, I said the Gospel message is THE most important.
  • When others such as the preacher tried to talk with her about this "mission work" she was doing, Allison became defensive and in a huff walked away.
  • Allison is too defensive and does not reflect on the thought she may not be 100% correct. She heard a voice and obeyed, yet this does not account for human error in things. Humans err all the time. It is never--ever a wise thing to not listen to what others have to say, we should at least give some thought to what people have expressed---maybe they are right, or maybe they are not. Humility goes a long way!
  • Allison does not seem to know Scripture. She has been attending church services, but I don't recall her depending on the Word of God to give her direction. I find this interesting given a prophet follows what the Word of God states, we have His Word the Bible, and this is our primary "voice" from God. I'm not saying we cannot not "hear" that small voice or impression in our inner person. I am saying God's Word is the primary way we "hear" from God. 
  • Allison has a chip on her shoulder about Christian's. She thinks they are judgmental, yet she too is judgmental. 
  • She is a character that is full of sarcasm, defiance, bravado. 
  • Page 403. "Our trouble is that we're not talking about the same gospel. The gospel I know is the one where Jesus preached and lived the unconditional love of salvation. You know-the one where he ate at the same table with the hookers and the drug addicts and the victims of injustice and poverty-that one. The one you're talking about is the one I haven't read-where only the right kind of people get into the closed club and get saved." Spoken by Allison.
You do have to be the "right" kind of people. You have to be in a "right standing" or justified before God. The only way to be in a "right standing" or justified before God is to accept His Son Jesus Christ. See Philippians 3:8-10; Romans 3:22-26.

Published by David C. Cook in 2010
496 pages
Reluctant Prophet Series #1
Link @ Publisher:
http://www.davidccook.com/catalog/Detail.cfm?sn=106487

Link @ Barnes and Nobles:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/reluctant-prophet-nancy-rue/1100212179
Paperback $11.18

Authors site:
http://www.nancyrue.com/

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